The government has recently ordered an inquiry into a study of bats and bat hunters that had been conducted in Nagaland.
According to a report in The Hindu, the investigation has been ordered to know how the scientists were allowed to access live samples of bats and bat hunters (humans) without due permissions.
The study was carried out by Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, the National Centre for Biological Sciences (NCBS), the Wuhan Institute of Virology, the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in the US and the Duke-National University in Singapore.
It was funded by the United States Department of Defense’s Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA).
Although the study was conducted in 2017, the inquiry was ordered recently as two of the researchers were from the Wuhan Institute of Virology, an institute located in the city of Wuhan from where the massive outbreak of the deadly coronavirus started.
As per the report, a five member committee was sent by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) to conduct the investigation.
The study was conducted on 85 bat hunters in Nagaland.
According to the study, the presence of filovirus reactive antibodies were found in “both human and bat populations in Northeast India, a region with no historical record of Ebola virus disease.”